Sunny skies notwithstanding, these photos are reminiscent of the condition in which the campus spends much of the year in. I don’t really have any interesting stories about foggy days (and sadly, no photos of rainy ones) but ethereally peaceful as these look, there is a reason November is known as the month of depression; the BC rain can be very lonely, and the landscapes seemingly abandoned, almost desolate. Even the deer are mostly gone.
Or at least part of the netherworld. Solitude or loneliness?
My impressions of rainy days seemed dominated by memories of walking hastily to classes in the Max Bell (inaccessibly situated atop four flights of stairs up the hill) while the rain dripped off timbers around me and the clouds hung heavily from the sky, branches drooping under their weight. People clutching their jackets tighter around themselves. The grass: wet, forlorn, bare. The kettle boiling away, and mugs and mugs of Milo, and my green duvet tucked in around me in bed (or in the history room).
The best place to listen to the rain was always the loft bedrooms, where the panel of windows along the top of the walls let in daylight. You climb precariously up the stairs, letting the light flood into you, and listen to the light, unceasing patter of rain on the roof as the daily sounds of community living muffle around you.
Sailing in this weather was not exciting. Often, theory lessons were had, sometimes knots, sometimes radio lessons in the cafetaria, by the lovely fire. Kayaking was great, though (you’ll see, later).
I made the rash decision – once – to cycle the 13.5 KM to Langford in the drizzling winter rain in only my shorts. I reasoned, I’ll heat up on the bike, no? And the rain will dry off bare legs quicker than pants. Clearly, I had the wrong kind of pants! It was an invigorating experience, since I had to cycle very fast, but it wasn’t something I repeated.
Biking in the rain or in the aftermath of rain is also a remarkably filthy activity, particularly on loose gravel. I often arrived at the Superstore with spattered glasses and cheeks, and my backpack limned with mud, kicked up by my back tire. I’ve always thought it looked impressively rugged. Mostly, people probably thought we looked unkempt, though as this was Victoria, BC, people were mostly used to it.
In any case, the mystery imposed by the fog is a bit of tantalizing one. What is beyond the invisible horizon, and how do I get there? There is the safety of the docks and the lure of the unknown, the ineffable mystique of the future and the infinity of that moment’s yearning for it.
Pearson feels like the photo on the left now, fuzzy around the edges, starting to lose definition. There are new photos on Facebook of the same place, but somehow it feels like another world’s replica, a completely distinct and new setting. To be very honest, I am struggling with the idea of returning for One World 2013, given my opportune six weeks’ break then, but … I don’t think I would be going back to the same place and I don’t know that I want to, even.